Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

 

Anita Panov and Andrew Scott established their practice, panovscott, in 2012. One might assume they are green-faced emerging architects who made a splash with this beautiful project early on in their career. Dubbed Jac, this house extension has been awarded at this year’s Australian Institute of Architects Awards, as well as cleaning up at 2017 Houses Awards. Except, it’s quite clear, even at just a glance, that this is no work of emerging talent, but rather two people who have done their time in the industry, having accumulated serious experience via lengthy apprenticeships with much-lauded architects.

Located in an inner western suburb of Sydney, Jac is a transformation of a place via the insertion of a new structure between two that already exist. The first is a federation era four-room cottage, whilst the second is an astoundingly sculptural jacaranda tree, which predates the cottage.

“In undertaking such a project, we were able to continue our interest in the effect of time on buildings,” said panovscott. “That sense in which structures might exist into the future, being the manner in which they appreciate in character with age, along with the manner in which structures have come through time to the present. In both directions accumulating meaning via the nature of their construction and decay, and the events they contain.”

With Jac, panovscott have established an architecture that is a hybridisation of the time reference, where all the individual elements defining the space in the most beautiful manner.

The cottage is a robust brick structure with elegant turn-of-the-century proportions and ornamentation. It is part of a distinct building tradition, with a familiar arrangement of rooms that establish a carefully considered homecoming procession.

 

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

 

The second existing place, older than the first, is the diaphanous room loosely defined by the outstretched canopy of a magnificent Jacaranda tree, with almost-horizontal branches cantilevering up to 12 metres in length. “This great room changes so dramatically with the seasons – dense with moving shadow in summer, that boundary dissolving to become almost non-existent in winter, and then later in the year tinting the light purple with flower,” said the architects. “The transient nature of the space is for us analogous to a less rigid culture, one that emanates from the particularities of place.”

Panovscott’s contribution to the project delivers a series of volumes that are neither open nor closed, not rectilinear or free in form, not dark or very bright. The new form is distinct in character, offering a third alternative. There seems to be no clear threshold between inside and out. Instead, the transformation is a collation of elements derived from those already existing. “We like to think that this has enabled a richness in the experience of the dwelling,” they said, adding “that at each moment in time a part of the house is optimally refined for the hour, the season, or the mood of our wonderful clients.”

 

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

Jac by panovscott | Yellowtrace

 

The brief called for a house that would allow the clients a more proximate connection to the environment. The one that enabled an experience of their garden and the street, as well as the passing of the seasons and the time of day, to become an intrinsic part of their daily experience. The resulting house is outward looking, finely attuned to the prevailing characteristics established by the existing site. “But then our clients also wanted the house to be inward looking, to be complex and rich enough for them to live a fulfilling life within its enclosure,“ said the architects.

Jac only has one bathroom, shared between the owner and their guests. The main bedroom contains only a bed, with the luxury of a new adjacent robe. Despite the generous size of the land, the house remains relatively small, allowing the garden and the great Jacaranda to hold court. The windows that allow constant interactions with the context are huge in scale. In the great room, the space rises vertically via a void in the level above, expanding to the sky, but then also horizontally, allowing the experience of the full width of the land.

In discussions with their clients at the completion of the project, panovscott concluded the house had a certain frugality that is offset by moments of wilful generosity. “It occurred to us that this kind of house could have only been built for people who knew how to live because they had been doing it for quite some time,” conclude the architects.

 

 


[Images courtesy of panovscott. Photography by Brett Boardman.]

 

About The Author

Dana Tomić Hughes
Founder & Editor
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Dana is an award-winning interior designer living in Sydney, Australia. With an unhealthy passion for design, Dana commits to an abnormal amount of daily design research. Regular travel and attendance at premier design events, enables Dana to stay at the forefront of the design world globally. While she is super serious about design, Dana never takes herself - nor design - too seriously. Together with her life and business partner, Dana is Boss Lady at Studio Yellowtrace, specialising in Design Strategy, Creative Direction and Special Projects. The studio takes a highly conceptual and holistic approach to translating brands & ideas into places & experiences.

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